Ministers from the OSPAR contracting parties will meet together for the first time in seven years to discuss the future of the marine environment of the North East Atlantic.

Ministers from the OSPAR contracting parties will meet together for the first time in seven years to discuss the future of the marine environment of the North East Atlantic.

Seas At Risk and member organizations from across Europe will be attending the event with the aim of pressing the contracting parties towards taking actions that truly protect and restore these shared waters of the OSPAR region.

The summit is the third Ministerial Meeting in the history of the OSPAR Commission. The two previous meetings took place in Portugal, 1998, and Germany, in 2003.

The five day event, where ministers of each state attend the final two days, is set to focus on three core issues:

• the opportunity of contacting parties to Join forces in order to achieve good environmental status in the North-East Atlantic by 2020, by providing the regional platform for implementing the EC Marine Strategy Framework Directive;
• marine protected areas (MPAs), which may include MPAs in an area beyond national jurisdiction;
• global warming and the effects of climate change and ocean acidification on the marine environment.

The North-East Atlantic Environment Summit will launch the Quality Status Report 2010, an assessment of the quality status of the North East Atlantic. The report will examine aspects of human influence on the sea, including contaminants, nutrient pollution and radioactive substances and the effects of human activities such as the offshore oil and gas industry, offshore wind farms, maritime transport, and fisheries.

The Ministers and representatives from the 16 OSPAR Contacting Parties (Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Iceland, Ireland, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and the European Community) will be present.

The Ministers and governmental observers from Canada, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, the Russian Federation, and the United States of America, and observers from intergovernmental and non-governmental organisations have also been invited.


North-East Atlantic Environment Summit website

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